It’s official, I am going to introduce an ordinance in Prince William County that no one beyond a certain age and of questionable heart activity shall be allowed on their front porch after 11:30 pm. Yes, that’s right, I did it again.
Thursday night at 11:45, I was again out on my porch. Because of my recent adventures, I now turn on the light first, as if that offers me some protection. Right away, I heard this: http://www.owlpages.com/sounds/Bubo-virginianus-1.mp3
I thought, ‘oh isn’t that nice we have an owl pair close by.’ They are usually 300-500 yards away in the woods, but tonight they were in one of our trees. This was a pair of Great Horned Owls. Now I know what your thinking, you want to know why I haven’t named them since I have a tendency to name all the members of our little game preserve. In addition, yes, I know it’s the beginning of the mating season for these big guys and what I heard was the ‘pair call.’ Well, I’m not going to fall for that one, because I know what you think I should name them and that’s just not going to happen.
Anyway, per my usual, I was just standing there, minding my own business when something must have happened. I didn’t hear anything, but my hearing and eyesight doesn’t come close to what these big guys have. I guess it was time to move, or a tasty meal was within range, I don’t know. But without any warning, this 3-pound bird with a 4-foot wingspan swoops down in front of me and off into the night. Not even so much as a ‘howdy-do’ and off he went.
I know I should be used to this kind of thing by now, and if it was always the same animal that we see all the time; deer, fox, opossum, or even RaSHi, I wouldn’t have even reacted. But it seems like every time I go out there, some new Members of the Wild Kingdom (MWK) wants to join the game reserve. Now this isn’t an exclusive club here and I’m not trying to be a snob about this, but do you think it would be asking too much for a little warning before they swoop in on me like that?
At least Big Yogi was polite and quiet and went about his business, even though he did spread my garbage all over the yard. And OK, I did disturb that big buck last week, oops my bad. And yes, I did put our Christmas tree out there on the porch for the summer and it was perfect for Myrtle. But we have to come to some sort of agreement here. … … … … … … … … … … … … … …
I have been informed by Mr. Owl, (who [sic] better, right?) that an agreement has been reached. Wait a minute, I wasn’t in on this!
Please don’t interrupt!
The MWK agree that you can continue to live here, pay the taxes, mow the lawn and trim the bushes, and go light on the pesticide and fertilizer, if you please. In return, MWK will control the populations of field mice, rabbits, crows, snakes, skunks, all manner of bugs, and anything else they might deem as tasty, (including that poodle that lives up the street if he’s not careful). In addition, MWK will provide the beautiful music that wakes you in the morning and puts you to sleep at night. MWK agrees not to deliberately attack you, however if you continue to interrupt us during our normal seasonal biological functions, we may revoke this part of the agreement. MWK also may pee and crap anywhere we damn well please, and it will be your responsibility to make sure you are not hit by it or step in it; you are the one with the big brain, remember?
If you agree, please nod politely.
Yes, sir. [nod] [sigh]
© J T Weaver
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